Presidents Quill

First Cast may 2022


Hi fellow flyflingers,

First up and most importantly I owe the club and membership an apology. I am saddened to have to be in this position – an issue I thought well sorted, until very late notice put us well and truly on the back foot. I am sorry to tell you that I got it wrong. I apologise.

That issue is the old standard – where are we going to call home?

Until the last few days we were readying to move to the Remuera Bowling Club, a local club with similar demographics and a wealth of space and facilities, and a venue I was certain had been locked down. The Auckland City Council were happy, the RBC seemed happy and we looked forward to hosting meetings there, which I announced at our last meeting. However, a late change of heart – brought about through our desire to have a barbecue prior to meetings – (don’t even ask) apparently proved a bridge too far. To say that I was surprised is an understatement – ‘blind-sided’ springs to mind.
I confess to feeling a ‘trifle irritated’ but managed to retain cordial relations. (My neighbour’s wildly errant bamboo got a severe thrashing however.)

So yes, we have a new venue, one which we have paid for, and these vendors will not have yet another sudden change of heart or loss of will.

Fortunately, we are able to meet in a reasonably central area of Auckland and the venue has some real benefits.

The first meeting in the new venue will be at the Orakei Community Centre, 156 Kepa Road, and will start with a barbecue – god-willing – from 7pm. We cannot get access sooner so we will run the meeting itself from 7:30 – 9:00pm with half an hour left for clean-up, restoring the hall, and putting our equipment away. (Hours booked 7 – 9:30pm)

If you wish to arrive sooner please do not disturb the women of the sewing group in the hall, there is an outside covered courtyard area, and we can gather there prior.

There is also access to a long lawn in front of the tennis club, which we can easily utilise for casting tuition and practice.

We have booked the hall for the next year and we have had remarkable support and concern from Margaret Voyce of the Orakei Local Board, and Lucia Davis of the ACC, who is the Strategic Broker of Connected Communities. A title that reflects the importance the Council puts on Community welfare, and the people associated within that. We are very, very fortunate to have both these wonderful women working for our club’s welfare.

To that end, could we please respect the environment of the Community Centre; if you must smoke, perhaps the Tennis Club carpark is best. There is plenty of parking both in front, and at the tennis club behind.

I look forward to working with the Council, the Community Centre and the local Area Board, as we still have irons in the fire for future plans, which they support.

I will need a show of members at an upcoming event on a Saturday in June – more details to come – to show our interest in a specific venue and in support of the Orakei Local Board and for Lucia Davis, in particular. This short requirement should prove invaluable to the growth and future of our club further down the track.

While the Council have been generous in applying discounts to rental, we are once again paying venue costs, albeit fairly small. To that end Alan Goldman has been working valiantly on our behalf with various funding agencies and has made good inroads in establishing our sports club as a worthy funding recipient.

We are costing various upgrades and will present these to authorities as we can.

Our committee is working very hard to bring things along to where we want them to be, and I once again wish to acknowledge the amount of work and generosity of personal resource your committee devotes to the club. Brendon Frater has stepped into the role of Secretary and has made a terrific fist of it. John Stevenson has worked tirelessly on trips, trophies and in holding and maintaining all our loan and teaching gear, as well as storing at his home. Damon Scott has helped move and store all our paraphernalia and hardware at his premises in readiness for a move to a new home, pending news on storage facilities on site at Kepa Road. We are also blessed with help from Owen Johnson on website and social media and he is working with Derek Tutill to upgrade our offerings. Stephen Kerr is organising our speakers for us and will reinstate raffles at club nights soon.

We do have an opening for someone to manage external relations with our charities and with women’s groups, and if you think this is something you would like to tend to, we’d welcome you to the committee with open arms.

We will reinstate the live stream of our meetings for those who cannot attend in person, and we will continue to slowly upgrade these services with suitable technology as we can.

So, all that said, we are approaching the busy time of the year for Turangi and the fishing round Taupo, and we are pleased to announce that bookings for our Club Lodge in Te Hei Place are rock solid. It is booked for every weekend for the next three months. This should result in a better return on the Lodge than was forecast some months back. Great news.

We are due to reinstate friendly competition with the North Shore Fly Fishing Club due to endeavours by Brendon Frater, and we have a Tongariro Competition weekend coming up with them. If you think you can show them all how it’s done, please keep June 11th and 12th free and make yourself known to, and book with, John Stevenson 0274 972339

The next Club Trip is Saturday 28th May to the Ngongotaha, meeting at the first carpark up Paradise Valley Road, at 9am. If you wish to stay either night you will need to book your own accommodation.

Margaret Voyce, OLB, has asked that our city members look at making submissions on Auckland’s density of housing issues, and as this affects us all I include the link for comment here. As she said, ‘it’s a numbers game’, and anything that you want to say will help, and brief is fine.

Have your say

 The committee and the club holds no political position on this, and any response must be entirely at your own discretion, and is in no way endorsed by the club or its officers.

I do hope, in these strange and difficult days, that you are able to get out and fling a fly, watch the clouds over water, get some sun on your face, and admire the fantastic beauty of our incredible country, in stillness and peace.

Tight lines.